You Just Thought of Making Profit Now?

Rich Tehrani : Communications and Technology Blog - Tehrani.com
Rich Tehrani
CEO
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You Just Thought of Making Profit Now?

More calls, more CEOs, more problems. There seem to be more and more companies coming out of the woodwork who now realize they need to focus on sales and marketing in 2009 for their survival. It seems these companies founded themselves for the sole purpose of being sold to Cisco and other solid companies and now those dreams have slowed or in some cases vanished.

Yes, the big tech companies are still purchasing but if they don't pick you up now, there are limited opportunities for future funding.

I get these calls and all I can think is "You're waiting until the middle of the recession to start thinking about how you get customers?" I could say more but the sheer lunacy of the whole situation doesn't allow me to articulate without peppering my writing with obscenities.

Moreover, now is the time I am hearing more than ever that PR alone isn't cutting it for companies (did it ever?). The complaint is there is too much noise and editors/reporters are being laid off around the world by the hundreds of thousand meaning few reporters to even pitch to.

So now, these unknown companies are cash-strapped and need to sell something in 30 days. "Can you help me with that," they ask? Worse, they come to TMC so we can help them generate leads with the expectation of selling product in a few weeks.

Message to CEOs and marketers everywhere... You really expect people who don't know your company to buy communications and tech products from you? Seriously? On what planet do people bet their careers and the future of their companies by partnering with a company that doesn't market to them? And in a recession no less?

Many of my fellow engineers seem to be lost when it comes to marketing. They just don't understand. I suggest that all engineers be required to take five marketing courses before graduating. Why? Because, simply -- the sheer quantity of companies who made great products and then vanished is shocking. If only these companies knew how to position themselves, many of them would b thriving entities today.

This may be the best way to explain it to them. With all the terrible news coming out of Detroit about American car companies, would you buy an American car? I have mentioned a few times in the last week that I think Cadillac has come a very long way. The response from friends and relatives - why would anyone buy a car from a company which could soon go out of business?

In the case of the unknown communications/tech company - the perception by customers is exactly the same.

So even if I am a viable customer in the market for a new car, GM could capture me as a lead and call me 50 times and I won't buy a thing from them.

Marketing can be summed up in many ways but the concept is to consistently instill your brand and message in the mind of the customer so when they are ready to purchase something, they call you; visit your site, etc. If they question your ability to survive you will not get the RFP or purchase consideration.

There are so many ways to use technology and solid media partners to help you get to your target audience - regardless of what this audience is.

I just hope this economic situation has taught all company heads that the first focus has to be on generating earnings and focusing on selling your company or technology can be secondary

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